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Lednice  

Jiří Kroupa

[Ger. Eisgrub]

Town in southern Moravia, Czech Republic, known for its manor house and garden. Situated on the border with Lower Austria, about halfway between Brno and Vienna, the estate belonged to the Liechtenstein princes from the mid-13th century to 1945. Before 1588 Hartmann II, Landgrave of Feldberg, had commissioned a house and ornamental garden for use as the family’s country seat. The house was modernized in the 17th century by Charles Eusebius, Prince of Liechtenstein, who employed, among others, the stuccoist Bernardo Bianchi, the masons Pietro Maderna, Pietro Tencalla and Francesco Caratti (1632) and the architects Giovanni Battista I Carlone (ii), Giovanni Giacomo Tencalla from Vienna and Andrea Erna from Brno (1638–41). Further modifications were made by Antonio Beduzzi in the 1730s, by Isidore Canevale in 1766–72 and by Joseph Kornhäusel, who gave the house a Neo-classical façade in 1815. The only part of the house to remain unaltered was the monumental riding school and its stables, designed in ...

Article

Mafra  

José Fernandes Pereira

Town, 40 km from Lisbon, Portugal, entirely dwarfed by its palace-convent. In 1717 John V of Portugal, fulfilling a vow made in 1711, determined to rebuild a friary at Mafra for the Franciscans of Arrábida as thanks to God for the birth of a male heir. However, rather than housing about 13 members of the Order, as originally intended, the project dramatically expanded as the King appointed a vast team of workers. At its head was the German architect known in Portugal as João Frederico Ludovice, who had trained in Rome and had settled in Lisbon from 1701, and under him were the Milanese Carlos Baptista Garbo (fl 1698; d 1724), Custódio Vieira, Manuel da Maia and Ludovice’s son António. The King also sought information about religious buildings in Rome from the Portuguese ambassador there and took advice from the Marquês de Fontes.

Between the laying of the foundation stone (...

Article

Ronald Baxter and Mario D’Onofrio

Benedictine abbey in Lazio, Italy. The birthplace of Western monasticism, it was founded c. ad 529 by St Benedict (c. ad 480–c. 547; see Benedictine Order §1) on the mountain overlooking the town of Casinum, on the site of a pagan temple. Benedict wrote the Rule here after 534, and he was buried alongside his sister, St Scholastica, in the chapel of St John the Baptist. The architectural history of the abbey (see §1 below) is closely linked with historical events. Montecassino was sacked by the Lombards c. 589, and it lay abandoned until c. 718, when a small community was founded there; it was reformed c. 729, and the monastery was rebuilt by Willibald, from Waltham Abbey. The abbey grew more powerful during the 8th century: Carloman, brother of Pepin the Short, was a monk there c. 746, and Paul the Deacon stayed for ten years until his death ...

Article

Jerzy Z. Łoziński

Polish village, c. 70 km south-west of Warsaw. It is the site of one of the few Polish palaces preserved with all its furnishings. The property belonged to the Nieborowski family in the 16th century, and it was redesigned (c. 1695) by Tylman van Gameren as a Baroque palace for the Primate Michał Stefan Radziejowski. It was a rectangular two-storey building with a façade framed by two towers. In 1922 a third storey, designed by Romuald Gutt, was built into the mansard roof. The palace was redecorated in 1766–8 for Prince Michał Kazimierz Ogiński. The Radziwiłł family, who owned the property from 1774 to 1945, also redecorated the interiors several times. The interiors dating to 1766–8 include the stairwell, with walls covered with faience tiles manufactured in Harlingen, and the Rococo Red Salon. Neo-classical decorations (c. 1784–5) by Simon Bogumił Zug, with grotesque wall paintings by ...

Article

Noto  

Lucia Trigilia

City in the province of Syracuse, eastern Sicily, remarkable for its Baroque architecture and its unified urban plan. In 1693 the fortified medieval town of Noto, built on the slopes of Mount Alveria, was destroyed by an earthquake and afterwards was abandoned by its inhabitants. All that remains of old Noto are substantial ruins of the walls and castle, fragments of buildings and the royal gate. The modern city lies c. 10 km from the Ionian coast, between Pachino and Syracuse, 7 km from the old town. The decision to rebuild Noto on a different site, known as the fief of the Meti, is attributed to Giuseppe Lanza, Duke of Camastra (1630–1708), who was appointed by the viceroy and given wide powers for the reconstruction of the town. He solicited the technical advice of various experts, including the Flemish military engineer Carlos Grunembergh. Even as the city’s construction began, however, with wooden temporary buildings and the foundation of the churches, including those of the SS Crocifisso and S Niccolò, part of the population opposed the relocation of the city. One reason was that the new construction was not at the upper level of the Meti (the ‘Pianazzo’) chosen by Camastra but at the lower level of the plateau....

Article

L. V. Kazakova

[Petergof; Petrodvorets, 1944–c. 1994]

Russian town, palace and park 29 km west of St Petersburg on the Gulf of Finland. It was founded by Peter I in 1709 as his summer residence and is renowned for its cascades and fountains. In 1715–24 a two-storey palace was built with a central section flanked by two projecting bays; the original architect is unknown, but further construction followed the designs of Le Blond family §(3) and Niccolò Michetti. Empress Elizabeth (reg 1741–62) commissioned Bartolomeo Francesco Rastrelli to enlarge the palace (see Rastrelli family, §2). Between 1745 and 1755 he raised the building to three storeys and added three-storey wings facing the Upper Park, with galleries ending in two domed pavilions.

Of the early 18th-century interiors, the Tsar’s study, with oak panelling in Rococo style by Nicolas Pineau, remains unchanged, as does the oak staircase. Rastrelli designed five staterooms and a series of reception-rooms, which were sumptuously decorated with gilded wood-carving, ceilings painted by ...

Article

Pushkin  

D. O. Shvidkovsky

[Tsarskoye Selo]

Former summer residence of the emperors of Russia, 24 km south of St Petersburg; also the adjacent town. It consists of several imperial and private palaces set in parks: the Bol’shoy (‘great’; or Yekaterininsky, after Catherine I) Palace, surrounded by the Stary (‘old’; or Regulyarny, ‘regular’) Gardens and the Novy (‘new’; or Zhivopisny, ‘picturesque’) Gardens; the Aleksandrovsky Palace; and, near by, the Boblovsky Palace (destr. World War II), the Paley Palace, the Fyodorovsky Gorod (a barracks) and other buildings. A village was built close by in the mid-18th century, becoming a town in 1780. In Soviet times the town was renamed Pushkin, in honour of the poet.

Emperor Peter I presented the estate to his wife Catherine after his victories against Sweden: the first building, a stone villa, was commissioned in 1718 to be built by the German architect J. Braunstein in a northern Baroque style. J. Roosen laid out a Dutch garden at the same period. In ...

Article

Recife  

Roberto Pontual

Brazilian city, capital of the state of Pernambuco. Built on the Atlantic coast in north-eastern Brazil, the city (population c. 1.3 million) contains several important Baroque churches. Its early development, in an area inhabited by Europeans from 1534, was linked with that of its neighbour, Olinda, for which Recife acted as a sea port. The connection was broken in 1630 by the invasion of the Dutch, who virtually destroyed Olinda and developed the town of Mauritzstadt on the island of Santo António at Recife, with a rational urban plan unknown in Brazil at the time. The Dutch also left a rich pictorial record of the town in the work of such artists as Frans Post (see Post §(2)) and Eckhout, Albert (see also Nassau, House of family §(1)). When the Dutch were driven out in 1654, Recife continued to grow and became one of Brazil’s major commercial centres in the second half of the 19th century as well as the cultural centre of north-eastern Brazil. Its most splendid buildings date from the 17th and 18th centuries and provide a catalogue of Baroque forms. The church of the Third Order of S Francisco da Penitência has an interior (completed ...

Article

Andreas Falz

German town in the province of Baden-Württemberg, c. 10 km west of Heidelberg. During the 17th and 18th centuries Schloss Schwetzingen was the summer residence of the electors of the Palatinate. The 72-ha castle gardens were created between 1753 and 1777 in the reign of the Elector Charles Theodore, and they remain among the finest in Europe. The juxtaposition of the strictly geometrical Baroque-style French garden and the surrounding English landscape garden gives the castle grounds their special charm. The French garden, which was re-created from 1978 on the basis of the original 18th-century plans, was laid out by the court gardener Johan Ludwig Petri and the architect Nicolas de Pigage, while the landscape gardens were designed by Friedrich Ludwig von Sckell. Pigage erected a series of splendid buildings in the park, among them a bath pavilion (1773), a mosque (1778), a monopteral Temple of Apollo (...

Article

Jiří Kroupa

[Ger. Austerlitz]

Czech town, c. 20 km east of Brno in southern Moravia, renowned for its palace. It was settled at the beginning of the 13th century by an order of German knights who built a fortress on the site of the present palace; parts of the earlier structure are still visible in the grounds. The order remained until 1411, when there was a change of ownership. At the beginning of the 16th century the fortress was purchased by the noble Kounic family (subsequently the counts and princes of the Kaunitz-Rietburg dynasty), who converted it into a Renaissance palace at the end of the century. By the end of the 17th century Count Dominik Andreas Kaunitz (1655–1705) was intent on further renovation. The first plans for this purpose were prepared c. 1688 by Enrico Zuccalli, an architect at the Bavarian court, who intended to leave parts of the Renaissance palace almost unchanged, creating a new east wing modelled on Gianlorenzo Bernini’s façade of the Palazzo Chigi-Odescalchi, Rome. Zuccalli’s plan remained unrealized, however, and in ...

Article

Simone Hoog

Town and château in France, 20 km south-west of Paris. A hunting-lodge built for King Louis XIII in 1623 was rebuilt with extensive gardens from 1631 (see fig.). Under King Louis XIV it became the main royal residence and the seat of the French government from 1682. The château was enlarged in two main phases, first by Louis Le Vau from 1668, then, from 1678, by Jules Hardouin Mansart. The interior decorations were carried out under the supervision of the Premier Peintre du Roi, Charles Le Brun.

The gardens at Versailles, laid out by André Le Nôtre, with a programme of sculptures directed by Le Brun, were designed to complement the château: their solar imagery (see §2 below) was directly related to the image of Louis XIV as the Roi Soleil (Sun King). Further altered by Louis XV, Versailles was one of the most resplendent European palaces of the 18th century, a symbol of French royal power and an exemplar for contemporary monarchs....

Article

Christian F. Otto

German city and capital of Lower Franconia, Bavaria. It is notable for its Baroque architecture, particularly that of Antonio Petrini in the 17th century and Balthasar Neumann in the 18th. The most notable building from this period is the Residenz, built by Neumann.

Würzburg, mentioned in a document of ad 704 as ‘castellum Virteburh’, is situated on the flat right bank of the River Main about halfway between Frankfurt am Main and Nuremberg. On the opposite bank rises a steep hill, the Marienberg, which takes its name from a circular church that was dedicated to the Virgin Mary in 706.

The see of Würzburg was established by St Boniface in 742, and a cathedral consecrated in Charlemagne’s presence in 788. In 820 Emperor Louis the Pious granted toll privileges to the town market. As the town prospered the power of its bishops grew, and in 1030 they were granted jurisdiction over the market and the citizens’ court. In the 11th century the cathedral of St Kilian was enlarged to its present external form of a Romanesque basilica with nave, aisles, transept and two west towers; two eastern towers of green sandstone, set in the angles between the transepts and the choir, modulate in section from square to octagonal....